MYSURU: It may be the cleanest city or top the list of open defecation free cities with of 1 million population but when it comes to technology, Mysuru City Corporation lags behind other municipal corporations. The civic body is the next biggest municipal corporation after Bengaluru in Karnataka. It has more than 2.2 lakh properties with a population just over 1 million. This year, it has set a target of revenue collection of Rs 200 crore in property tax alone but it hasn’t created the facility for taxpayers to pay it online like in Pune and Hyderabad.
Nearly a decade ago, the issue had come up and there were half-hearted efforts to justify themselves that they’re bringing in transparency but it didn’t take off. They claimed there were technical glitches and though they promised to improve the system, not much has happened so far. Sources claim there is a lobby against the online system being introduced. Hence, officials concerned aren’t showing much interest in making all transactions online.
Former mayor and corporator Ayub Khan claimed officials aren’t enthusiastic about this score though corporators have told them to do it. “Eight years ago, when I was the mayor, a delegation was sent to the Pune Municipal Corporation to study the system. After the visit, the team recommended online transaction but it is yet to become a reality,” he said.
Sanctioning of building plans and issuing completion reports, property and water tax collection and renewal of licence can be done online in Pune. The team had recommended changes on similar lines but it was shelved. Ayub Khan claims online transactions will check misappropriation of tax money and streamlining of records. Recently, major misuse of tax money at MCC zone 9 was discussed in the council.
“There is confusion in accounts too as money collected under different heads are deposited in different accounts. We’re kept in the dark. Once everything is online, there are less chances of alleged misuse of taxpayers’ money and also will help taxpayers,” he explained. MCC commissioner G Jagadeesha said, “We’re working on it and sought permission from urban development department authorities. Meanwhile, we’re looking at how Hyderabad has implemented it and studying the trial at Tumakuru and Shivamoggga corporations.”
Karnataka plans to implement online transaction in all corporations and is working on it. If there’s a delay, MCC will take permission to take a lead, said Jagadeesha.
Credits ET Realty